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Pojo's Pokemon Card of the Day

 

Herdier #82

Black & White

Date Reviewed: June 28, 2011

Ratings & Reviews Summary

Modified: 1.65
Limited: 3.00

Ratings are based on a 1 to 5 scale.
1 being the worst. 
3 ... average.  
5 is the highest rating.

Back to the main COTD Page

Combos With:

Baby Mario
2010 UK National
Seniors
Champion

Herdier #82/114 (Black and White)

Time to look at the Stoutland line now, starting with the Stage 1, Herdier. This Pokémon line suffers from a severe cuteness drop off as it goes on. I mean, Lillipup is adorable but the rest of them? Not so much.

So, is Herdier one of those Stage 1s that is just there to evolve or does it have something else to offer? Stats-wise, there’s nothing to particularly like or dislike: A moderate 80 HP, a reasonable retreat cost of one, and a predictable Fighting Weakness. So far, so meh.

The best thing by far about Herdier is its first attack. For two Colourless Energy, Collect will draw you a generous three cards. That’s nearly always going to be helpful, and while I would never suggest that you use a two Energy attack on a Stage 1 as a draw engine, if you have no better attack options, or are in desperate need of draw, this is actually a really good option. That’s more than you can say for Bite: Herdier’s second attack is every bit as generic and mediocre as the name suggests, giving you 50 damage for [C][C][C].

Even so, Herdier is one of the better evolving Stage 1s. Its main function is still to evolve, but if you ever find yourself stuck with it, you can at least do something worthwhile. The question is: will you ever want to play the evolution?

Tune in tomorrow to find out!

Rating

Modified (HGSS-on): 2.25 (a good evolving Stage 1! *shock*)

Limited: 3.75 (yep, any draw you can lay your hands on is great)


Otaku

 

Instead of annoying people by linking to my auctions, instead I’d like to make an appeal for those who are on Facebook to head over to Toyota 100 Cars for Good on Facebook and vote. My preference is that you vote for Feeding South Dakota as that is a charity I personally work with (and have benefited from).

As for the actual review, Herdier is a transitory Stage 1 that bridges the gap from Lillipup to Stoutland, tomorrow’s CotD. Herdier is Colorless, like the rest of the line, and since the MD-On format is almost officially dead but the new one is still in its infancy, it is hard to place where Colorless falls on the scale of Types. Given that I can think of one Colorless Resistant Pokémon line that might still see competitive play next format (Gengar), but no Colorless Weak superstars have risen (yet), the outlook is a bit dim. The 80 HP doesn’t help either: non-Evolving Stage 1 Pokémon need to clock in with at least 100 HP to really stand a chance. Even those that can Evolve really need at least 90, probably that same 100 HP benchmark: even in HGSS-On it is still well within reason for a decks primary attacker to dish out 70 points of damage a turn reliably and fairly early in the match, which means we just need to top it all off with a PlusPower for a OHKO. Fighting-Type decks will find it even easier due to the Weakness: only the weakest attacks won’t take Herdier down in one shot. The lack of Resistance is depressing but won’t ultimately hurt playability because so many cards lack it as well, and the single Energy Retreat Cost is easy to pay.

Herdier actually has two solid attacks that border on being “good”. Collect is a familiar sight and looks a bit steep at (CC), but as a Stage 1 Pokémon you’ll probably have had two turns to attach Energy and even if you haven’t, you can use Double Colorless Energy to pay for it in one shot. The reward is drawing three cards. Hardly game breaking, but like I said a solid use for what could have been a wasted attack. Bite is just a hair less sturdy but still useful: (CCC) for 50 points of damage. Since you’ll rarely enjoy the benefit of striking Weakness, most of the time this will (barely) OHKO a small Basic, but it is still enough damage in one shot to annoy all but the largest Stage 1 and 2 Pokémon, or those with healing or protection backing them up. Especially when factoring in the HP, both attacks could have been a little stronger, and at least one of them should have been.

As we will look into Stoutland more thoroughly tomorrow, I’ll just say that barring the low HP this is actually a solid lead-in to the card. Lillipup turns in a similar performance with two options, one 50 HP and one 60 HP. Both are Fighting Weak, lack Resistance, and have single Energy Retreat Costs. The 50 HP version (Black & White 80/114) has two attacks, both costing (C). One attack does 10 points of damage just for the sake of being able to do any damage, and the other allows you to return an Item card from your discard pile to your hand. Not really good, but not bad. The 60 HP version (Black & White 81/114) looks to be the real winner as for (C) it can draw a card and for (CC) hit for 20 points of damage. “Winner” is relative here: while neither is bad, both are mostly “acceptable”. With a small boost, I’d actually consider this to be an interesting “opener” line with what we’ve seen so far, as Lillipup and Herdier both have somewhat sturdy set-up uses.

In Unlimited, we have better card for setting up and better Stage 2 lines (Colorless or not) than Stoutland. In Limited play the bigger Lillipup is actually a decent filler Pokémon for most decks and the smaller could be useful if you pull a few Items for your deck. The fact that there are two Basics for Herdier to Evolve from makes it more likely for you to pull a workable Evolutionary line and thus improves its effective performance. As always, the average HP and damage yields are lower here, and on top of the potency of any draw power, turns Herdier into a great pull for Limited.

Ratings

Unlimited: 1/5

Modified (MD-On): 1.5/5

Modified (HGSS-On): 2/5

Limited: 3.75/5

Summary

Another Stage 1 Pokémon you’d rather skip with Rare Candy than play, if you want to run Stoutland you really should play at least one or two copies in case of Trainer denial. That being said, this card was very close to being playable in its own right: notice that those are general scores I posted above! One big boost or small boosts to two or more of HP, cards drawn with Collect, damage from Bite, or a similarly improved Lillipup and we could have gotten a supporting Stage 1 line that optionally ran its Stage 2.

Mad Mattezhion
 Professor Bathurst League Australia
Herdier (Black & White)
 
Hey guys, today we have the first Poke'mon to look like a terrier wearing a coat. Today's card is Herdier!
 
Herdier is a Colourless type evolving Stage 1 with 80 HP, Fighting weakness, a retreat cost of 1 and two attacks.
 
Obviously the weakness is a problem when facing Donphan and the HP could be higher, but the other stats are quite tolerable. So far so good.
 
The first attack is what makes Herdier worth looking at. Collect costs [c][c] in order to draw 3 cards from your deck. While this doesn't make Herdier worth playing for it's own sake in Modified, it is definitely one of the better attacks an evolving Stage 1 can have. A single DCE gives you serious draw power until you evolve or are knocked out, at the cost of losing your attack in the meantime.
 
Bite isn't worth considering. Unless an attack that deals at least 50 damage will somehow win you the match (for example, if your opponent only has a small Basic in play with no backup) then you can go for it, but otherwise stick to Collect.
 
Modified: 3 (a better than average evolving Stage 1 hampered by the lack of a playable Stage 2)
 
Limited: 4 (even if you don't pull Stoutland, Herdier is splashable and give brilliant draw power. The fact that the two Lilipup in the set have similarly useful attacks is another plus. Use it!)
 
Combos with: a Stoutland worth using


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